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Decloedt v. Wagaman

Court of Appeals of Indiana

August 15, 2014

ALLISON I. (WAGAMAN) DECLOEDT, Appellant-Petitioner,
SHANE C. WAGAMAN, Appellee-Respondent

APPEAL FROM THE WHITLEY CIRCUIT COURT. The Honorable James R. Heuer, Judge. Cause No. 92C01-1102-DR-79.

ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT: LINDSEY A. GROSSNICKLE, Bloom Gates & Whiteleather, LLP, Columbia City, Indiana.

ATTORNEY FOR APPELLEE: MICHAEL A. SETLAK, Shilts Law Office, Fort Wayne, Indiana.

NAJAM, Judge. BAILEY, J., and PYLE, J., concur.


Page 124

NAJAM, Judge


Allison (Wagaman) DeCloedt (" Mother" ) appeals the dissolution court's order denying her motion to relocate and granting

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Shane Wagaman's (" Father" ) petition to modify custody and parenting time. Mother presents a single issue for our review, namely, whether the dissolution court's order is clearly erroneous.

We affirm.


In 2002, Father and Mother were married, and in 2009, Mother gave birth to H.W. The parties separated in January 2011, and Mother filed a petition for dissolution of the marriage. The parties agreed that Mother would have sole physical and legal custody of H.W., and Father would have parenting time under the Parenting Time Guidelines.

On June 30, 2011, Mother filed a notice of intent to relocate to Texas to live with her boyfriend, Justin DeCloedt. Father objected to Mother's relocation with H.W., and the dissolution court denied her motion following a hearing.

On July 3, 2013, Mother married DeCloedt, who had moved from Texas to California. And on July 23, Mother filed her verified notice of intent to relocate to California. Father filed an objection to Mother's notice, and he filed a verified petition to modify custody, parenting time, and child support. Following a hearing on the pending motions, the dissolution court denied Mother's motion to relocate and granted Father's petition for modification of custody, parenting time, and child support. The dissolution court found and concluded in relevant part as follows:

8. The Decree also granted Mother primary physical custody of [H.W.] and Father was to have parenting time with [H.W.] pursuant to the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines. Mother moved to Goshen, Indiana from Columbia City, Indiana in June of 2011. Father did not object to this move due to the fact that he would still be able to exercise his allotted parenting time and that he would still have the ability to attend [H.W.]'s extracurricular activities.
9. Undisputed testimony established that Father exercised parenting time with [H.W.] per the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines and every Sunday, which was not on his weekend, in order to make up for the missed mid-week parenting time. The parties would meet at a half-way point for the pickup and exchanges, which was in Warsaw, Indiana. Father has always had standard Guidelines visitation (every other weekend) with [H.W.], including overnights, since the time Mother originally moved out of the former marital residence (over three years ago). Additionally, Father had parenting time with [H.W.] lasting up to a week when Mother traveled out of state.
10. The Decree further required Father to pay Mother child support of $166.00 per week, which was since modified to $194.00 per week. Father has been consistent in his payment of child support and is current in his weekly support obligation.
11. Mother has been employed as a teacher in the past and is capable of earning $692.00 per week, as she stated was her weekly wage in the fall of 2012. Mother is currently employed as a nanny in Goshen, Indiana. Mother does not have employment secured in Orange County, California [where her husband lives].
12. Father has been employed for the last nine (9) years at Warner Electric and earns $1,202.00 per week.
13. Mother intends to move with [H.W.] to Orange County, California to reside with her husband immediately (or the first of the year in 2014) as she

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testified in Court. Mother has moved five times in less than three years.
14. Mother married Justin DeCloedt on July 3, 2013. Mother filed her intent to relocate on July 23, 2013.
15. Orange County, California is approximately 2,141 miles from Fort Wayne, Indiana.
16. The paternal grandparents, Rick and Diana Wagaman, testified that they see [H.W.] at least once a month and sometimes more often than that, depending on the circumstances. Rick Wagaman further testified as to Father's ability to parent and take care of [H.W.]
17. Rick and Diana Wagaman also testified as to how important it is for them to see [H.W.] on a regular basis and how much the proposed relocation would affect them. [H.W.] also visits with his cousins from Kalamazoo, Michigan on a regular basis.
18. In addition to their regular visits and interactions with [H.W.], the paternal grandparents have a summer trailer in Howe, Indiana, where they camp for two to three months each summer.
19. Father maintains and resides in the former marital residence with his fiancé e, Jenna Coffelt, and her two children, [J. and M.] The home is a three bedroom house, located in a neighborhood in Columbia City.
20. [H.W.] is also close to Jenna's parents, who treat [H.W.] as one of their own grandsons. Jenna's parents live in Columbia City, Indiana.
21. [H.W.] has a close relationship with his " stepbrother and stepsister," [J. and M.] [H.W. and M.] share a bedroom with bunk beds. [J. and M.] care for [H.W.] as if he was their little brother. They have been a ...

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